Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

  • Word of the Day
    shyster

    shaI st@r

    noun
    a person, usu. a lawyer, who uses underhanded, unethical methods.
    That shyster accepted her fee for his services but did almost nothing for her.

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  • Vocabulary of the Day
    naysayer

    neI seI @r

    noun
    a person who refuses, denies, or opposes, esp. because of cynicism or pessimism.
    They went ahead with their ambitious plan despite the arguments of the naysayers.

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Jun
19
2013

nepotism

Posted in Word of the Day by admin

nepotism

netih zəm

noun

favoritism shown to a near relative, as in preferential hiring or patronage.
example: The governor was accused of nepotism after he hired his mother to fill a top position.

Word Origin

The word “nepotism” has its origins in the Latin word for “nephew.” Why are nephews at the root of this word and not sons? The word was first used in English in the fourteenth century to refer to preferential hiring by the Pope, whose closest descendants as a celibate representative of the Catholic Church would be his brothers’ sons, his nephews.